Farrah Abraham has to be playing dumb, right? I don't expect the Teen Mom star turned erotic entertainer to read Feministe or have a fine grasp on Simone de Beauvoir. But as an adult woman, former "girlfriend" of James Deen and ostensible participant in the 21st century, I would expect our dear Ms. Abraham to at least be broadly aware of what feminism means.
No dice. In an interview with the Miami New Times ' Allie Conti, Abraham discusses the sex tape she made with Deen and how he allegedly leaked it. Then the following bit of dialogue ensues:
Do you consider yourself a feminist?I'm pretty feminine. I think so. Not feminine — feminist.What does that mean, you're a lesbian or something? No, that's not what I'm asking at all.What context are you saying it in? It's a complicated concept, but I guess at it's most basic, it means that women are equal to men.Oh, I definitely feel that women are equal to men. No doubt about that. I mean women should have equal rights to men, every day.
Not just Monday, Wednesday and Friday y'all!
Now I don't know too much about Abraham, other than the basics. But because it seems impossible to me that a relatively media-savvy female in 2013 has no idea about feminism, I'm prone to take this as her 1) actually mishearing at first, 2) trying to flippantly avoid the question and 3) stalling for time when that fails. Finally Conti throws her a softball, one Abraham can answer without claiming any particular label, and she runs with that.
The question then becomes: Why would Abraham try to avoid answering anything about feminism? And the answer seems pretty obvious — for the same reason so many celebrities and public figures sidestep the label. Abraham doesn't want to alienate her fans, the good people of Nebraska or potential purchasers of her porn tape by associating herself with, like, a bunch of ugly lesbians or something.
This is, of course, all predicated on Abraham knowing the meaning of feminism all along, and maybe I really am giving her too much credit (though the fact that she knows enough to pull out the feminist/lesbian trope seems to support my theory?). If we take Abraham's statements at face value, however, the situation becomes particularly sad. Instead of mocking Abraham's ignorance, we should wonder why someone who believes absolutely that "women are equal to men" doesn't have the first idea that there's a name for that.
Photo via farrahabraham.me